In the same letter that I was accused of following after the money changers, I was also reprimanded for adding to the Word of God or giving my people “bad information” on Sunday night, April 29, 2007.
On Sunday night, I was preaching about Jesus and Peter walking on the Sea of Galilee in the middle of a storm as reported in Matthew 14, Mark 6 and John 6. (I have been preaching through the book of John verse by verse—what a great way to preach. I hope you are enjoying the study as much as I am.)
Anyway, I said that Jesus knew the storm was coming and set the whole thing up to strengthen the Disciples faith that He was and is the Christ. This, of course, is ultimately the pursuit His Glory.
My brother in Christ, who visited that night, has taken great issue with my suggestion that Christ set the whole thing up. He stated that he read and re-read the passage in several translations and did not see where I got that from. Therefore his conclusion is that I was adding to the Bible, which as we all know is strictly forbidden in Revelation, or I am “giving your people bad information.” Again, this is a very serious accusation. To state that an elder is adding to the Word of God or preaching that which is false is something that requires me to answer.
So let me state publicly where I got that from. My premise is simple: I believe that Jesus was God when He was on this earth as a human being. I do not believe the Bible teaches that He set His deity aside. I believe every miracle was a sign to prove that He was and is God. According to Phil. 2 He set certain things aside, but there isn’t any indication that He set His deity aside. If He were not God on this earth then why did the angels worship Him at His birth? If Jesus of Nazareth was not God, then what are all the “I am” sayings about in John? If Jesus was not God when He was on this earth then what does John 1.14 teach? Certainly my brother in Christ is not denying the Deity of Christ. In Mark 2.5 Jesus forgave a man’s sins and only God can forgive sins. In John 8 and 10 the Jews were going to stone Him to death because He presented Himself as God. In John 10.30, Jesus said, “I and the Father are one.” Certainly no one would argue with me that God the Father doesn’t know the weather forecast and future. God is omniscient and Jesus is God. This is not circular reasoning. This a fact for which I built the premise of my message.
So, upon my belief that Christ was and is God, I then can assume that He was and is just as all knowing as God. In Matthew 12.25 and Luke 6.8, the Bible says Jesus knew their thoughts. The reason He knew their thoughts was because He was and is God. In John 2.24, Jesus knows all men. Certainly it is reasonable to assume that if Christ still had that ability to know the thoughts and intent of mankind, He knew what the weather forecast was going to be. Later, Jesus would tell the disciples that Judas was going to betray Him. Certainly it is reasonable to believe that because Jesus knew the future actions of a human being, He could and did know what would happen when the high pressure and low pressure systems met each other over the Sea of Galilee.
Now, if this is not the issue, then the issue could be my statement that Jesus set the whole thing up. Where did I get that from? I got that from Matthew 14.22 where Jesus “constrained” the disciples to get into the boat and get on the water on a night that He knew it was going to storm. I did a word study on “constrained” and I certainly got the impression by everything I read that Jesus made the disciples get in that boat. But to an even greater degree, I believe God is setting up all kinds of things everywhere, all the time, as the Sovereign God of the Universe.
As I read through the entire Bible, I see His Sovereignty over and over again. I see Him setting up the storms that Joseph went through in Genesis to save the House of Jacob from starvation. Joseph seems to indicate this exact concept in Genesis 50:20, “But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.”
We may have thought that storm to be evil against those disciples, but not Jesus. Jesus meant it for good because those Disciples got to see that Jesus was not just a man, He was the Son of Man, and as the only begotten Son of God He had that power to walk on water, calm the storm and relocate the boat to the shore instantly.
Didn’t God set up the crucifixion of His Son so that in the salvation of millions upon millions He might be glorified? Doesn’t God reveal His incredible, unbelievable love for man through the cross and in doing so isn’t He glorified? What did Jesus mean when He told Pilate in John 19:11 “Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin.” I submit to you that the storm could have no power over those disciples except it was granted by God. If you say it is God the Father, I say the Father and Son are one.
What is Ester 4.14 all about if it isn’t about God setting up events in the kingdom of man? In Daniel 5 God set it all up so that the world could know that the Most High God rules in the Kingdom of man.
My brother states that it is possible that Christ knew that storm was coming and it is possible that he could have set it up but the Bible doesn’t say that; therefore, I should not have preaching that. My contention is that Christ is God and as God He knows and knew everything. In Matthew 24.26, Jesus states that no one knows the day and hour of the Second Coming except the Father, yet in John 10.30 He states that He and the Father are one. Therefore, I am left to conclude that Christ knew everything that the Father knew and knows.
Here’s my bottom line: I believe Christ was and is God even while He was on this earth. I believe He retained the attribute of being omniscient. Furthermore, I believe the Bible when it says God is the same, yesterday, today and forever—I change not (Hebrews 13.8 and Malachi 3.6). Therefore, I apply all the attributes of God to all Scripture at all times.